September 30, 2014


Site Name: Sirpur
Site Type: Heritage site; Buddhist site
Location:  Chhattisgarh state, India
Highlights: 7th century brick temple of Lakshman
Nearest Railway Station: Raipur, 78 kms from Sirpur
Nearest Airport: Raipur
How to reach: Well connected by road from Raipur
Hotel: A lot of options in Raipur
Restaurants: Very limited options; better to go to Raipur

Sirpur is a historical town located at a distance of about 78 kms from Raipur city in Chhattisgarh state of India. It is located on the banks of the river Mahanadi. The city was once the capital of Somvanshi kings of Dakshin Kosala. The town which was also visited by Hieun Tsang was an important Buddisht centre once. It is believed that the town was buried under debris due to a earthquake in the 12th century CE. The town has so many noteable heritage sites including the 7th century brick temple of Lakshman. Let us explore the important sites of Sirpur in this article.

Gandheshwar Temple:

The temple dedicated to Lord Shiva called as Gandheswar is an important temple in Sirpur. The 8th century temple is located on the banks of the river Mahanadi. This artistically beautiful temple has a lot of attractive sculptures. The big idol of Buddha under the tree is a highlight of this temple.

Lakshman Temple:

The 8th century brick temple of Lakshman is the highlight of Sirpur. It is said to be one of the finest brick temples erected in India. The temple is dedicated to Lakshman, the younger brother of Lord Ram, which is unique. The walls and pillars of the temple have exquisite sculptures. 

Buddha Vihar:

The 6th century Buddha Vihar has a big Buddha statue and other small idols excavated. 

Sirpur is full of heritage sites. Apart from Buddha Vihar, there is a 6th century Buddhist monastery called Anand Prabhu Kundi Vihar, 6th century Swastik Vihar, 6th century Baleswar (Shiva) temple, one Jain vihara, a lot more Shiva temples, Buddha vihars and Vishnu temples excavated recently.

A temple for Goddess Chandi located in the nearby Birkani village is also an important site.

Happy travelling.

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